Validity and reliability of in-situ air conduction thresholds measured through hearing aids coupled to closed and open instant-fit tips Academic Article uri icon


  • Audiometric measurements through a hearing aid ('in-situ') may facilitate provision of hearing services where these are limited. This study investigated the validity and reliability of in-situ air conduction hearing thresholds measured with closed and open domes relative to thresholds measured with insert earphones, and explored sources of variability in the measures. Twenty-four adults with sensorineural hearing impairment attended two sessions in which thresholds and real-ear-to-dial-difference (REDD) values were measured. Without correction, significantly higher low-frequency thresholds in dB HL were measured in-situ than with insert earphones. Differences were due predominantly to differences in ear canal SPL, as measured with the REDD, which were attributed to leaking low-frequency energy. Test-retest data yielded higher variability with the closed dome coupling due to inconsistent seals achieved with this tip. For all three conditions, inter-participant variability in the REDD values was greater than intra-participant variability. Overall, in-situ audiometry is as valid and reliable as conventional audiometry provided appropriate REDD corrections are made and ambient sound in the test environment is controlled.


  • O'Brien, Anna
  • Keidser, Gitte
  • Yeend, Ingrid
  • Hartley, Lisa
  • Dillon, Harvey

publication date

  • December 2010